Sunday, July 31, 2011

Seattle - Day 4, the iPhone

Last day in Seattle. I was extremely happy to head home to my husband, but bummed to leave such a great town. I didn't shoot any 35mm this day, instead I burned through a pack of PX600 Poor Pod (love that stuff!) and snapped a few iPhone images in Pike Place and Post Alley, and one cliche but always necessary out-the-airplane-window shot. It was so nice to be home, but the next day, I wished I had grabbed some dried strawberries and chocolate-covered cherries from Chukar in Pike Place. I hope you've enjoyed the very delayed appearance of all my Seattle images. What a great week!

Seattle Day 3, Evening Stroll

I'm a mountain girl with a serious hankering for the ocean. I don't quite know how to have the best of both worlds, so I try to get to the coast at least once a year to satisfy my craving for saltwater and sea mist. Seattle was my first coastal visit this year and although I wasn't able to get out on the ocean, or even the Sound, I sure didn't miss my chance to stare at the water, smile as the seaplanes floated away, or wish I could be in every boat I saw. It helped to visit Lake Union and the Center for Wooden Boats. This was my favorite night of them all in Seattle. I shot a LOT of film and really, really love every image I got. It was the combination of Seattle's clouds and the lovely softbox lighting they provide, the subjects (I'm maybe a little obsessed with boats), and the beautiful colors rendered by Kodak Portra 400 that came together to create some of my most favorite images I've ever made, and that's saying a lot.

After a long walk on the docks at the Center for Wooden Boats, we rode the trolley up to Whole Foods (image below - loved the light) for some snacks. I also wanted a real onion bagel for breakfast in the morning (no real bagels in Utah!) and a treat for later. I ended up getting a black and white cupcake, and wondered if there's anything Whole Foods can't do? I wish I didn't have to drive 20 minutes to get to the nearest one here in Utah. I digress. We walked over to Yellow Dot Cafe (again - loved it!), grabbed sandwiches, then retreated to our hotel rooms for the night. What a nice day filled with lots of film, delicious food, good company, and many boats.

Friday, July 29, 2011

Seattle - Day 3, Midday Meander

black and white
red and yellow

I thought it was smart to post my June Seattle trip day by day (Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday) but almost two months have passed and I've only posted half of my photos! I've done myself a bit of a disservice because I won't remember all the details. (And I like details.) No matter. It's high time I posted these pics and got them off my ever-growing to-post list because I've got a boatload of Portland pics and a yurt trip to share.

Day 3 was a photo-filled day. I shot most of a roll of 35 in my K1000 during lunch, and these are some of the shots from my midday meander between Aurora and Westlake, and Thomas and Republican. I burned through a lot of 35 on that trip because I wanted some of my own images, but I also had a roll or two to shoot for Vanessa and our Doubles project. (I'll be posting that roll soon on our blog. It's one of my favorite rolls yet!) I'll post the rest of my Seattle Day 3 images tomorrow, so come on back!

Monday, July 25, 2011

Sparks Fly


Is it sappy to say this is how film photography makes me feel? Vanessa and I are having so much fun experimenting with double exposures. This image is from our fifth roll. I shot the fireworks and she shot the camera image. We were at the overlook on Neahkahnie Mountain on Highway 101 two weeks ago and as I loaded a decades-old roll of Kodachrome into my K1000, Vanessa asked me to hold it still for a photo. Serendipity. I don't think we could have planned this better had we tried. Please head on over to our blog, 35mm Doubles to see the rest of the roll and our previous four rolls. We've got three more done, developed and ready to share, so stay tuned. It's an understatement to say how excited we are about these upcoming rolls.

On another note, you wouldn't believe how many new images I have to share. I came home from Portland just over a week ago with 53 new Polaroids and two rolls of film (plus all the doubles), then I turned around the next day and went backpacking to a yurt with my husband. We stayed at Grizzly Ridge Yurt on the Ashley National Forest and I came home with nine more Polaroids and another half roll of 35. I've been on a photo frenzy lately and I love it! Stick around, there's a lot to share.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Renovate, Remodel, Revamp

Last November, I woke to a puddle on my kitchen counter and when I wiped it up, I got dripped on. Days later, I noticed bubbles on the ceiling about five feet away, and months later, a new puddle formed on the floor between the two previous trouble spots. Once May arrived and the weather (almost) dried up, the work to fix it all began. A flurry of activity and noise ensued and now two months later, we've got what feels like a brand new house. I should mention, however, that the kitchen and all the work inside the house only took four weeks. The roofs took all of four days, but the weather was so bad it took three weeks of waiting for the rain to stop between the one day on the garage and the three days for the house.

The roof is new, including most of the plywood beneath the shingles, and the garage roof and plywood base is new. The kitchen was completely gutted down to the plaster walls and subfloor, and new laminate flooring, paint, cabinets, countertop, backsplash, fixtures, and appliances now fill the beautiful space. The laminate floor was laid throughout our upstairs entry and hallway. Our front room, bedroom, hallway, closets, doors, and downstairs hallway were painted. The two upstairs bedrooms got new wood window casings instead of the ugly original tile, then new blinds. The built-in hall closet got new hardware, and my bathroom is getting new grout (it cracked during the kitchen demo (perhaps a testament to my poor DIY skills?)) and finally, over a year after my dad and I "finished" the bathroom, we're getting the shower trimmed out with accent tile to really finish it. Finally. But perhaps the best part of the whole deal is that we never really felt too displaced despite the chaos. Everyone we talked to said a kitchen remodel is the worst type of remodel. We went into it expecting the absolute worst and we were very pleasantly surprised. It wasn't bad at all. We grilled a lot, made pasta and pancakes on our camp stove, ate a lot of toast, and went out the rest of the time. It felt like we were camping in our own house.

Last Wednesday night I broke in the stove and cooked our first dinner in the new kitchen and veggie rice bowls were on the menu. I made them with a bottled pineapple teriyaki sauce we love, brown rice, broccoli, carrots, red pepper, red onion, and bok choy. So good and fresh, and even better when eaten outside (isn't everything?). On Friday, I broke in the oven with a delicious lemon basil bundt cake. I'll post the recipe soon on my other blog, Budding Foodie. This next week, I see a lot of fresh veggies in our future. Vegetables and fruit are all either of us want these days. I think a solid month of really random food did us in. I'm looking forward to a grilled veggie pizza, roasted asparagus, grilled fruit with vanilla ice cream and granola (a favorite new summer treat), and fresh berries right out of the garden.

No remodel mention would be complete without before and after pics, so here they are. It's an incredible difference and I can't believe it's MINE. My amazing contractor, Dan Schmeling of Arete based in Northern Utah, did an out-of-this-world job. I'm thrilled with his work and am over the moon for my new space. Thanks Dan!

Wednesday, July 06, 2011

Seattle - Day 4, The Polaroids

Skipping right past a plethora of K1000 images from Day 3 (I'll come back; there's a method to my madness), I give you the PX600 "Poor Pod" Polaroids (waterfront, Japanese maple, robot on Western Ave below Pike, and two pieces of art from Post Alley) and a trio of PX600 UV+ images (Mt. Rainier from the plane). I really, really love the Poor Pod film. Its tones are perfectly smooth and contrasty. The PX600 UV+ isn't my favorite, however, but the film is finicky and it may be that I just didn't have the best light conditions, or that this was an earlier version of the film. Either way, kudos to The Impossible Project. It's because of these folks that I even have b/w integral film to shoot in the first place, so I really can't complain.

I was never so happy and sad for a random Friday in Seattle. It meant class was coming to a close and I could go home, but it also meant I had to go home. I packed up all my things and my one souvenir (espresso and whiskey dark chocolate truffles from Fran's), then went to class for the morning. Soon enough we were cut loose, and one of the girls and I went back to Pike Place to experience it in all its daytime madness, but stopped by the waterfront first to check out a massive cruise ship that was docked and boarding its next round of passengers. We ate lunch at The Athenian at Pike and had a beautiful view of the waterfront below. We wandered the market, saw some fish-throwing, sampled more Chukar Cherry treats, smelled the flowers, bought some snacks, and meandered through the crowd. On the way back to the hotel in the afternoon, we stopped at Bottega Italiana for divine, sugar coma-inducing chocolate hazelnut gelato. It was a good thing we had a nice walk back to the hotel or else I would have fallen asleep on the sidewalk. It probably didn't help that I also bought a cheesecake bite in the market ten minutes earlier. Live and learn, eh? We (accidentally) walked past the Space Needle on our way back to the hotel for our luggage and the airport shuttle. Our flights were at similar times, so it really worked out great. It was really nice to have a Seattle buddy, so Deena, if you're reading this, thank you.

An hour or so of entertaining airport people-watching ensued, following by the bumpiest flight of my life, but before the bumps, there was a so-close-I-could-touch-it fly-by of Mt. Rainier. I don't know why I shot it with my Polaroid SLR 680. I wanted Polaroids of the mountain, but all the film I had left was a pack of the PX600 UV+ I had bought a few days earlier. I hoped the images would have been better/different, but no luck. But know this: it was extremely beautiful and very, very cool. On the descent into Salt Lake City, I think the plane fell out of the sky a little. The turbulence was the worst I've ever experienced and I was lifted up out of my seat more than once. People were bracing themselves and collective gasps and groans were heard for most of the descent. The flight attendants didn't even come around to collect garbage. It was insane. Once we landed, I booked it to the nearest exit and waited excitedly for my husband to drive up. I opened the door and on my seat was a little white paper bag with a dark chocolate-covered strawberry and a couple of truffles from Hatch Family Chocolates here in SLC. What a treat. We ate those chocolates on the way home, then busted into the espresso and whiskey truffles from Fran's. It was sweet to be home. Pun intended.